Helmet Library user regulations

Helmet is an abbreviation of the words Helsinki Metropolitan Area Libraries.

Helmet library service consists of Espoo, Helsinki, Kauniainen and Vantaa City Libraries. Helmet libraries have a shared customer register and library system.

Helmet libraries are open for everybody. Anyone who follows the customer regulations is allowed to use the libraries’ collections, services and customer facilities. You are obliged to use library materials, media and facilities in an appropriate way.

When you receive a library card (a customer registration number) or when you accept becoming a contact person, you are committed to follow these user regulations and the potential changes of the regulations. The current user regulations and the separate instructions and rules about the various appliances to be used at the library along with the rights to use them are to be found at www.helmet.fi -> Info -> Using the library.

Library card and pin code

Library card is a card or a customer registration number in some other form approved by the library (later in this text referred to as library card).

You can get a personal library card, the right to borrow and a PIN code at any Helmet library or mobile library. The first library card is free of charge. You will get the library card when you state your address and present a valid ID card with a photograph and personal identity number accepted by the library. To be able to receive a library card you need an address in Finland. If you do not have a Finnish personal identity number, your library card is valid for twelve months at a time.

Children under 15 can have a library card with a written consent by a guardian or other statutory representative (later representative) and by presenting an ID card. The child must be present when picking up the library card. The representative is responsible for the loans on the library card of a child under 15 years, as well as for the child’s use of other services, equipment and facilities of the library.

A day care centre, school, other institution or community can have a library card for twelve months at a time. A contact person is appointed for the card. This person will oversee that the card is used appropriately.

The library card is personal. This also applies to using the library’s self-service. You are responsible for the items that have been borrowed with your library card. Lending by the automatic lending machine is protected with your PIN code. 

You must inform the library immediately if your library card disappears. This responsibility also concerns the contact person. If you have lost your library card, you can call the telephone number 09 3108 5309 when the libraries are closed and leave a message in the answerphone. You are not responsible for the material that has been borrowed with the lost library card after you have informed the library that the library card is missing. A library card that has been reported lost will be removed from use.

Along with the library card you will need a PIN code, if you wish to use the library’s self-service machines, web services, customer computers or self-service libraries. You will get the PIN code from the library or mobile library when you present a valid ID card approved by the library. The PIN code will not be given by e-mail or phone.

Please keep your contact information up-to-date. You must notify the library without delay about the changes of your address, email address and your name. You can check your contact information on the website www.helmet.fi.

The relationship between the library and the customer is confidential.

The library is responsible for the accuracy of the customer register. The personal Information on the borrower and the representative is recorded in the libraries’ customer register. The library is responsible for keeping the customer register up to date according to the law in force.

In accordance with the Personal Data Act, the library has the right to record the customer’s personal identity number into the register. The register report is on view at the libraries and on the website www.helmet.fi -> Info -> Using the library.

You are entitled to check the information recorded about you in the library’s customer register. You will be shown the information in question at the library’s customer service desk when you prove your identity by presenting a valid ID card accepted by the library. The representative of a person younger than 15 years of age is entitled to get information about the guarantee’s overdue loans and unpaid fees. The contact person of an institution or community is entitled to check the information about the institution or community in question.

Loans, returns and renewals

You may have simultaneously 100 loans. The loan period varies from 1 day to 28 days. You will find specific information about the loan periods in the appendix of the user regulations. Movies and games will not be lent to a customer who does not fulfill the age limits approved by Kansallisen Audiovisuaalisen Instituutin Mediakasvatus- ja kuvaohjelmayksikkö MEKU (Media education and visual program unit of National Audiovisual Institute).

Due dates are on the check-out receipt. Please return your loans on the due date at the latest. You can return the material to any Helmet library during its opening hours. If you wish you can get a receipt of the return. Some libraries have so-called returning boxes. The items returned via the returning box are registered as returned on the next opening day of the library.

You will receive a notification of an approaching due date 48 hours in advance, if you have a functioning email address in the library’s client register.

You can renew your loans five (5) times at the library, mobile library or in Your record at www.helmet.fi. It is not possible to renew the loans if the material has been reserved or if you have lost your right to borrow. There may be restrictions in renewing the loans. E.g. bestsellers and most objects that are to be borrowed cannot be renewed.

The first reminder of overdue loans will be sent 14 days after the due date, the second reminder 28 days after the due date. The first reminder can also be received by email. The Helmet library system also sends reminders on unpaid payments in order to avoid the expiration of the debt.

You will lose the right to borrow

• if your loans are more than 28 days overdue

• if you have lost or damaged the material of the library

• if you fail to pay your overdue fees when they have amounted to or exceeded the sum indicated in the payments appendix

An exception to the above is a borrower who has started the process of a loan arrangement and whose debt to the library belongs to the freezing of payments. In the case of a debt like this, the debtor may not be targeted by the loss of borrowing rights due to a delay in payment.

You will regain your borrowing rights

• by returning the items that are overdue

• by compensating for lost or damaged items

• by paying the accumulated fees

If the payment has been transferred to a collection office the borrowing rights are restored only after the collection office has made the payment to the library’s account and the library has checked the payment.

Reservations and interlibrary loans

You can reserve material either at the library or by logging in www.helmet.fi.

You may not have more than 100 pending reservations at the same time. You will receive a notification about reservations that can be picked up by a text message, email or letter. There may be restrictions in reserving materials.

Most libraries have a self-service pick-up shelf for reservations. The protection of customers’ data will be taken into consideration when arranging the pick-up of reservations.

You can order an item as an interlibrary loan from elsewhere in Finland or abroad, if the item is not available in the collections of any Helmet library. The service is subject to a charge. If, however, the material in question is available in some scientific or special library in the metropolitan area, it cannot be ordered as an interlibrary loan.


In general, using the library is free of charge. However, fees will be charged for items returned or renewed after the due date, reservations that are not picked up, and for certain special services. The most important fees charged by the libraries are listed in the appendix of the user regulations.

The overdue fee will accrue every calendar day after the due date until it reaches the maximum amount. No overdue fee will be charged for materials from the children’s and teens’ departments. The overdue fee will be charged even if you fail to renew the loans due to a break in the internet connection or some other technical problem.

For a reservation that has been delivered to the pick-up shelf but not picked up by the customer, customers aged 18 or older will be charged a fee. The fee will be charged even if the pick-up notification has not arrived due to a delivery error, a fault in telecommunications, or another reason.

You must compensate for lost or damaged material. Instructions to compensate for material are to be found in the appendix of the user regulations. NB. The library is not responsible for damages which the recordings you have borrowed possibly have caused to your appliances or for those damages caused to a third person by using the library appliances.

The library uses a collection office to collect outstanding payments. The outstanding payments are transferred from the Helmet library system to the collection office used by each city library in question approximately 60 days after the due date. The collection concerns material borrowed by a person 18 years of age or older. More information on collection can be found in the appendix of the user regulations.

Loss of user rights

Your right to use the library may be denied for a certain period of time, should you repeatedly ignore the personnel’s warnings and keep causing significant disturbance for the library operations, endangering safety or harming property.

Denial of user rights may be up to 30 days. A office-holder's decision is made concerning the denial of user rights. You may claim for a revised decision according to the Local Government Act. Before being denied user rights, you have the right to be heard. A note of the denial will appear in the library’s client register and the note is removed when the time limit expires.

The application and validity of the user regulations

These user regulations are applied at the city libraries in Espoo, Helsinki, Kauniainen, and Vantaa after the city libraries in the respective cities have approved the regulations. The amendment of the regulations requires identical decisions. The mobile libraries, institutional libraries and the home services of libraries apply these user regulations when applicable.

These user regulations repeal the user regulations approved on 1st February 2021. These user regulations will enter into force on 1st February 2023 and will be valid until further notice. The period of notice is six (6) months.

Appendix for and more information on the user regulations

You can find the appendix for and more information on the user regulations (e.g. user regulations for customer computers) at www.helmet.fi -> Info -> Using the library.

Download and print user regulations (PDF)

Loan periods and fees

User regulations for self-service libraries

User regulations for customer computers