Interlibrary Delivery

Delivery is provided as a member benefit to all our libraries. Your library receives delivery service through one of these methods:

  • RAILS delivery vehicles or contracted delivery (see video below about our contractor's procedures)
  • Community Delivery Partnerships
  • Illinois Library Delivery Service (ILDS)
  • On Demand Delivery Service 
  • U.S. Postal Service

Use the Library Lookup (member directory) to find delivery codes, routes, days, Illinois Library Delivery Service stops, and other information for RAILS libraries.

Order RAILS self-adhesive delivery labels.

IHLS Delivery information is on the Illinois Heartland Library System website.

What We Deliver

The following items may be sent through interlibrary delivery:

  • Library materials, defined as items that are classified, cataloged, and available for loan.
  • Items sent from RAILS, the Illinois State Library, or the Illinois Secretary of State.

Please note that CDs and DVDs in their original packaging (which are extremely fragile) are not designed for transit without additional preventive measures to prevent breakage.

We will not deliver:

  • Items that are individually addressed and can be mailed via the U.S. Postal Service.
  • Library newsletters.
  • Bulk items for distribution.
  • Items sent to locations outside of Illinois.

Other items may be delivered at our discretion.

Frequency of Delivery Service

The frequency of direct delivery service is determined by the average number of items the library receives per week and is subject to change at the discretion of RAILS.

Frequency of Delivery Service
Delivery Days Per Week Items Received Per Week
1/Mail/On Demand 001 – 009
2 010 – 059
3 060 – 129
4 130 – 250
5 250+

Behind the Scenes of a RAILS Delivery Hub

Learn more about how RAILS handles the delivery of materials for hundreds of libraries around northern, central, and western Illinois.

Continental Transportation

Several of our routes are serviced by our contractor, Continental Transportation (a division of CTL Global).

The video below describes Continental's procedures for RAILS delivery, including security and sorting operations.