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Frequently asked questions

Opening hours & spaces

What are the Library opening hours?

The Library is open daily from 10am to 6pm, excluding the Russell Street Welcome Zone and Readings bookshop which will be reopening in January 2022. View our opening hours.

Is the Pauline Gandel Children’s Quarter open?

Yes. The Pauline Gandel Children’s Quarter reopened with the rest of the building, with the same entry requirements and regular cleaning as the rest of the Library.

Is Mr Tulk open?

Mr Tulk has reopened. Opening hours are 8.30–4.30pm, 7 days a week. Cultural, Family and Student members receive 10% off food and drink and the kids’ packs.

When will Readings bookshop at State Library Victoria reopen?

Readings State Library Victoria will reopen in January 2022.

Are all entries to the Library open?

No. All visitors will be required to enter through the Swanston Street Welcome Zone.

Do I need to book to visit the Library?

Bookings are not needed to visit the Library. Access to the Heritage Collections is by appointment only, please see more details below.

How do I access collection items in onsite storage?

Collection items in onsite storage will need to be ordered in advance in the usual way. Collection delivery times are 11am, 1pm, 4pm daily. Requests close one hour prior to delivery.

How do I access Heritage Collections items?

Heritage Collections items can be ordered via a librarian and accessed in the Heritage Collections Reading Room, by appointment, in the usual way. All heritage collection items will be available two business days following your request.

Contact us via the Ask a Librarian service to order heritage collections items such as manuscripts, hardcopy newspapers, pictures and rare books.

The Heritage Collections Reading Room will be open Monday-Friday 10-4pm, Saturday-Sunday 10-6pm.

COVID-Safe measures

What COVID-Safe measures are in place?

  • All staff and visitors over the age of 12 and 2 months are required to be fully vaccinated and must show proof of this to enter the Library. 
  • All staff and visitors must undertake a self-attestation as to their health and potential exposure to COVID-19, on entry to the Library.
  • Hand hygiene facilities will be available at the entrance/exit to the Library and in key locations.
  • There will be regular cleaning of all hard surfaces in the Library spaces throughout the day.
  • Physical distancing measures will be in place, with queuing systems in place and signage clearly displayed.
  • All visitors are required to maintain 1.5 metres from each other, as per Victorian Health guidelines.

Read more about a COVID-safe Library.

What happens if I am displaying symptoms?

In line with the conditions of entry, anyone displaying symptoms without a relevant medical condition will be denied entry or asked to leave the Library.

Who needs to wear a face mask?

Masks are now optional for all visitors to the Library.

Vaccination status requirements

How will the Library ensure the vaccination status of all visitors?

All staff and visitors over the age of 12 and 2 months will need to present a printed or digital vaccination certificate showing their full vaccination status and check-in using the Service Victoria app. 

Do children need to be vaccinated to visit the Library?

All staff and visitors over 12 and 2 months years old must be fully vaccinated to enter the Library, except those with medical exemptions. This includes all parents and guardians of children of any age.

What does the Library accept as valid proof of vaccination?

To enter the Library you must either:

  • Successfully check-in using the Service Victoria app linked to your vaccination certificate
  • Check-in using the Service Victoria app and separately present your vaccination certificate digitally; i.e., through the Medicare app or smartphone wallet
  • Check-in using the Service Victoria app and present a printed COVID-19 digital certificate or immunisation history statement or an eligible proof of exemption, together with ID.

What if I don’t use a smartphone or don’t have a MyGov account?

If you don’t have a smartphone staff will assist you to check-in using one of our self-service kiosks. When checking in you will also need to present your printed vaccination certificate.

For those who don’t have a MyGov account, you can request a hard copy of your vaccination statement from the Australian Immunisation Register on 1800 653 809. Please note, this could take up to 14 days to receive via the post. If you have access to Medicare online through your MyGov account, you can access your immunisation history there.

Can I enter the Library to use its facilities to print my certificate?

Unfortunately, no. As part of our conditions of entry, we are required to sight each visitor’s proof of vaccination status, so you will need to print it elsewhere.

Exhibitions, programs & school visits

Are programs running onsite now the Library is open?

Some onsite programs, such as Storytime and Playdate, will commence in December. The full suite of onsite programming will recommence from January, including tours. All of our other programs will continue online. For up-to-date information about our programs, events and exhibitions, please visit our What's On page.

Do I need to book to attend a program at the Library?

Yes. Priority access will be given to registered attendees. On-the-spot registration will be permissible if the venue/program capacity allows.

What measures has the Library taken to ensure its onsite programs are COVID-safe?

State Library Victoria has developed a detailed visitor engagement and ticketing process to ensure COVID-19 safety controls during a visit to the Library.

The following guidelines apply for tours, programs and exhibitions:

  • Proof of online registration for program attendance is required for all programs. Priority access to registered attendees.
  • Drop-in attendance will involve on-the-spot registration and is permissible if venue/program capacity allows (with the exception of guided school visits).
  • Visitors will be advised of the Library’s entry points and venue/gallery locations as part of the booking process and in reminder emails.
  • Some programs will have staggered timed entry and arrival times to manage visitor capacity.
  • Library event staff will manage socially distanced queuing systems and entry to program venues.
  • Venue inventory will be subject to a regular cleaning schedule pre- and post-event.
  • Please only sit in marked seats to help maintain safe social distancing from other visitors, even if you are visiting with family or friends.

What measures has the Library taken to ensure its interactive exhibitions are COVID-safe?

The Library has undertaken a risk assessment and created an action plan that will enable visitors to interact with elements of exhibitions that are designed for interactivity. This includes: 

  • Allocation of hand sanitisers at, or near, interactive components, and staff at entrances and throughout exhibitions encouraging hand hygiene.
  • Distancing markers on the floor reminding visitors to observe the 1.5m rule.
  • Increased cleaning frequency (interactives are to be wiped down at least once per hour).
  • A reminder of public health measures will be included in the ticketing sales process, visible on the ticket or as an email reminder.
  • Performers and workshop facilitators to wear masks, unless Victorian Government rules stipulate otherwise at the time of event.

Can I bring my school group to the Library for an excursion?

Our on-site school offer (both self-guided and facilitated programs) will return in 2022.

Students are more than welcome to access the Library individually, in accordance with our COVID-safe reopening. As always, we also continue to support schools through our online programs for the remainder of 2021.

COVID-19 digital certificate troubleshooting

If you have received your vaccination at a doctor’s clinic, pharmacy, or community health service and your immunisation history has not been updated on MyGov after 10 days of receiving your vaccination; or your details are incorrect, you will need to contact your vaccination provider directly.

I don’t know how to find and store my vaccination status on my phone – can I get help from Library staff?

While Library staff are unable to set this up for you, we can provide instructions and links to the Service Victoria website to assist you.

I don’t have Medicare – how can I show my vaccination status?

If you don’t have a Medicare card, you can still add your COVID-19 digital certificate to your Service Victoria app from myGov using your Individual Healthcare Identifier (IHI). If you don’t have one, find out how to get an IHI.

I have a medical vaccination exemption – what do I need to show on entry?

You may be exempt from the COVID-19 vaccination due to a medical contraindication as determined by ATAGI clinical guidance.

If you do have a medical exemption, you must provide evidence of this to enter the Library. We will accept a medical certificate or a letter from a CHO-approved medical practitioner as evidence of your exemption.

The document must be from one of the following authorised medical practitioners, dated and be valid for the period the medical practitioner specifies (up to six months), or for six months from the date of issue:

  • general practice registrars on an approved 3GA training placement
  • public health physicians
  • general physicians
  • infectious disease physicians
  • clinical immunologists
  • gynaecologist
  • obstetrician
  • GPs who are vocationally registered
  • GP who is a fellow of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners
  • GP who is a fellow of the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine.