Key Takeaways

  • Library fax services provide an affordable and accessible option for sending documents, with costs ranging from $0.25 to $1.00 per page for local and toll-free numbers, though international faxes may incur higher fees.

  • While convenient, library fax services can have limitations regarding privacy, hours of operation, and typically not allowing for the receipt of faxes, potentially necessitating alternatives such as online services or business centers.

  • Alternatives to library fax services include online fax services like mobile fax apps, and faxing through office supply stores or business centers.

A Fax App is International, Secure and Affordable – Try it Free!

Download the app

Fax from your iPhone or Android phone to 90+ countries internationally 

Choose Document Format

Send just about any file type as a fax (PDF, DOC, JPG, PNG & TIFF, HTML). Use our advanced document scanner & image processing technology if needed

Hit Send and Done!

Send & receive faxes on the go. Dedicated fax number provided with all subscription plans. 

Library Fax Services: The Basics

Libraries have expanded their offerings beyond mere repositories of books, becoming key access points for a variety of services. Among these is the ability to send faxes—libraries are increasingly including fax services in their repertoire, enabling patrons to transmit documents locally and internationally. Not all libraries provide this service uniformly. While some maintain classic fax machines on-site for public use, others are transitioning towards providing online fax services.

For those needing to send important paperwork like contracts or applications for employment through fax, turning to your community library can be a decent solution. We’ll first explore what you might expect regarding traditional fax machines available at many local libraries before discussing other variations of such services they might offer.

Traditional Fax Machines in Libraries

Fax machines, once considered indispensable office equipment, continue to occupy a niche in various libraries where they facilitate the sending of faxes and serve as conduits for document transmission both domestically and internationally. Despite their persistence, not every library is equipped with public fax capabilities. Options for receiving faxes at these facilities may be limited or nonexistent.

In instances where libraries do offer access to public fax services, they often come with the advantage of staff assistance. These machines also produce hard copies which remain crucial in certain contexts such as legal proceedings or when electronic versions are unacceptable substitutes. That being said, some libraries are adapting by incorporating online fax solutions that allow users to send and receive faxes through the internet and a fax app is even more convenient since it eliminates the need to go to the library in the first place.

Online Fax Services Offered by Libraries

Libraries are not left behind the digital transformation and have begun to embrace online fax services as a contemporary substitute for the classic method of faxing. These services boast an array of functionalities that include:

  • Both local and international fax numbers

  • The ability to send an unlimited volume of fax pages

  • Assignment of dedicated numbers for faxes

  • Highly secure document transmission enabled by end-to-end encryption, which adds a robust protection level for confidential documents.

Online fax services allow you to transmit faxes without leaving home’s comfort—eliminating the need for visits to the library just to use a traditional fax machine. 

The Cost of Faxing at Libraries

Faxing is usually quite cost-effective at libraries, offering a decent option for users who need to send faxes only occasionally. Sending faxes to local or toll-free numbers via library services often costs between $0.5 and $1.00 per page on average.

The prices for faxing at libraries can vary based on various elements, sending international faxes Incurs higher charges than sending local or domestic ones. Although receiving faxes might be possible at some libraries, they typically impose a charge for each page received. To gain a clearer insight into the potential expenses involved with faxing through this avenue compared to other methods available in the market today, let’s explore how these fees are structured and what factors may affect them.

Factors Influencing the Cost

Numerous elements must be taken into account when talking about the cost of faxing at the library.

Sending faxes internationally usually incurs greater costs compared to sending them within local or national borders as a result of heightened transmission fees. Anticipate increased charges when faxing documents to foreign destinations.

The total cost is also affected by the quantity of pages you need to transmit via fax. Libraries often implement a fee for each page sent. Hence an extensive document will correspondingly increase your expense. Prior to faxing process, it is advisable to verify specific rates with library personnel or by visiting their website.

Comparing Costs with Other Faxing Options

Online fax apps can be a cost-effective alternative to traditional library fax services when examining the overall expenses involved in sending faxes. Retail locations such as local shops, UPS, and FedEx also provide these services for about $1 to $2 per initial page while offering lower rates for additional pages. Though they may charge more than libraries occasionally, these venues compensate by providing longer hours of availability and ancillary offerings like printouts and delivery solutions.
Here’s a quick rundown on the how faxing at the library compares with the other methods:

Method Cost per Page Additional Fees Average Subscription Price Notes
Local Library $0.50 – $1.00 (1st page), $0.50 – $1.00 (additional) N/A N/A Fax services at a library
Fax Apps $0.06 – $0.20 Subscription $5 – $15 per month Smartphone apps like Fax App
Online Fax Service $0.10 – $0.30 Subscription $10 – $20 per month Can send/receive faxes via email or browser window
UPS Store $1.00 – $2.00 (1st page), $1.00 – $2.00 (additional) N/A N/A Fax services offered at UPS locations

Pros and Cons of Using Library Fax Services

Fax services in libraries come with both benefits and drawbacks. An advantage is that they present an affordable option for people who only need to fax occasionally, as well as the benefit of being situated within community libraries which are readily accessible to many individuals.
On the other hand, these library-based fax services often do not support receiving faxes and utilizing public fax machines could raise issues related to privacy. It’s essential to consider these pros and cons carefully when deciding whether library fax services meet your particular requirements. We will delve deeper into these considerations.

Convenience and Accessibility

Privacy and security issues might be a concern when utilizing public fax machines found in libraries, as confidential documents could inadvertently be exposed. Should any problems arise regarding the successful sending or receiving of faxes or if there are damages that occur as a result of using library-based fax services, note that the libraries do not hold responsibility for these occurrences.

This caution becomes even more imperative when dealing with sensitive materials such as legal papers or personal information. Under these circumstances, you might want to look into alternatives for your faxing needs which offer enhanced security and confidentiality protections. Options include private online fax services or using individual fax machines instead of relying on those available for public use.

Limitations of Library Fax Services

Fax machines at libraries provide many advantages, yet they come with specific restrictions:

  • The operating hours of the library can restrict access to their fax services.
  • Public fax services aren’t available at every library. If your nearby branch doesn’t offer these services, you might have to search for alternative venues.
  • Most libraries equip their facilities primarily for sending faxes rather than accommodating incoming ones. This could pose a considerable inconvenience if there’s a need on your part to receive a fax.
  • Using conventional public fax machinery within libraries may incur extra expenses due to the use of paper and ink as well as charges associated with phone lines.

Alternatives to Library Fax Services

Should you discover that fax services at libraries do not adequately meet your requirements, a multitude of other options are available to you. You have the choice of employing online fax services or apps, or visiting office supply stores, UPS or FedEx.

Mobile Apps

    A mobile fax app is a great alternative to faxing at a library because it covers all the limitations that a library fax may incur:

  1. Faxing with an app is secure and private. Even medical and legal documents are OK to send with an app since those document are considered HIPAA-compliant
  2. You aren’t affected by the library’s opening and closing hours, which may be quite restrictive
  3. If you need to fax at least 3 or 4 pages long, it’s generally cheaper to use an app since a subscription lets you a fax an almost unlimited number of pages
  4. You can get a fax number and receive faxes using this number which may be problematic at a library
  5. You don’t have to go anywhere with the app in your pocket. Constantly taking trips to the library if you need to fax something might not be so convenient for a lot of people

Office Supply Stores and Shipping Centers

Office supply stores provide additional options for fax services, presenting an alternative to those available at libraries. These include:

Office Depot



Various local shops

These venues typically offer faxing services that the public can utilize in a manner similar to those found at post offices. Most of them are more expensive than libraries though. Shipping outlets such as FedEx and UPS also provide fax services which could be especially useful due to their longer hours of operation. Here’s our guide to faxing at UPS.

Hotels are another source of access to fax machines. They often have business centers where guests and non-guests can send faxes. While guests might use these facilities as part of their stay package, non-guests may be subject to a usage fee.

Final Thoughts

For those who only need to send faxes occasionally, library-based solutions can be economical and easy-to-use options. Concerns over privacy or not being able to receive faxes may lead some individuals elsewhere. Alternatives including mobile apps for faxing as well as office supply stores that offer online fax capabilities are available for those seeking other avenues. 


Are library fax services free?

No, libraries will impose a charge for the use of fax services, with fees commonly falling between $0.50 and $1.00 for each page sent via fax.

Can I receive faxes at the library?

The primary purpose of fax services at most libraries is to send faxes, although there are some that may also permit you to receive faxes for a certain charge so we’d recommend you to ask this beforehand.

Are library fax services secure?

A fax machine in the library is secure enough but the fact those are public fax machines may endanger your privacy since confidential documents might be accessible to others in such a communal environment.