You may not know it—I sure didn’t—but your LA County and LA Public Library cards come with some insane benefits. The most obvious is, of course, being able to freely check out almost any library book, graphic novel and movie, but let’s talk about the other free perks that are, quite literally, at your fingertips. Whether you live in Culver City or Downtown Los Angeles, your library card gives you access to some pretty killer subscription services that you would have to shell out hundreds of dollars for otherwise. We combed through all the offers available via both the County of Los Angeles Public Library and Los Angeles Public Library networks (yes, they’re different – Culver City is a county library, the Mar Vista branch at the corner of Inglewood and Venice is a city library) and highlighted the absolute best deals. We’ll go through what makes each of them uniquely amazing and tally up just how much you could save each year by taking full advantage of these perks.
Lynda.com is one of the best online resources for instructional videos on almost any topic. Their mind-blowingly extensive library includes high-quality videos that cover subjects like software, creative and business skills (think: Photoshop, graphic design, marketing and so much more).
Yearly savings: $420
Zinio offers access to digital magazines; its library portal has more than 360 titles available for download, with no limit or return period. Their selection is super impressive and includes dozens of high-profile titles like Vogue, National Geographic, Wired, Rolling Stone and on and on and on…
Yearly savings: $3.99 – $4000+
3. Mango Languages
Learning a new language can be daunting, but Mango Languages makes the experience much more manageable and accessible. It, quite impressively, boasts resources for more than 70 languages, including apps on IOS and Android. With classes for all ages and a sleek interface, this might the resources that’ll finally help you remember everything you forgot in high school French.
Yearly savings: $175
Want to read a book on your tablet but don’t want to pay for it? Hoopla is the answer you’ve been looking for. It offers a vast selection of ebooks, audiobooks, comic books and movies that you can easily “check out” and seamlessly enjoy on your desktop or IOS/Android device.
Yearly savings: $5 – $1,000+
Tutor.com is your best bet when it comes to live, one-on-one help for academic studies, resume advice and test prep. Services are available for both students and adults, and could be just the right thing to make your resume stand out while hunting for that dream job.
Yearly savings: $4,080
Tired of spending $1.25 every damn time you want to download a song? Well, Freegal is here to save you, kind of. With your library card, Freegal lets you download up to 3 songs each week. Their selection can’t match iTunes, but it’s still plenty impressive with artist like Adele, David Bowie and Beyoncé.
Yearly savings: $195
Totally yearly savings: $9869+
Okay, so that total is definitely assuming you were to read every magazine or have a session with a live tutor for 10 hours a month, but the point is that your free library card is a great deal.