Caravan ID is NOT another CRiS
13 June 2023
We are regularly asked why people should join Caravan ID when their leisure vehicle is already registered with CRiS. It’s a fair question and comes about due to a misunderstanding of the two services.
CRiS work directly with manufacturers to record details of each new vehicle, to include the VIN and model numbers, which then results in the dealer you’re buying from issuing you with a document similar to the V5 (or ‘log- book’) you get with a new car. Etchings will be applied to windows during manufacture, very similar to how car windows were marked in the past, usually with the etching surrounded by a small warning sticker. That is what you get when your new van arrives. Great for manufacturers when they need to recall a particular model or to control vehicle warranty – but where’s the benefit to you?
If you want to look-up a leisure vehicle prior to buying it or are curious about a vehicle you’ve seen on your travels, you will have to pay CRiS £17.95 to check it out. Further, if you sell your CRiS registered vehicle you’ll need to update the CRiS register, which will cost you £19.95. Is it any surprise then that the CRiS database is said to be out of date by its users?
In the UK, we are told that there are over 4000 leisure vehicles stolen every year and more recent estimates place that at 6000, clearly indicating that leisure vehicle theft is on the increase. Of those 6000, we’re told that only 20% or so are recovered, but to go back to the 6000 stolen leisure vehicles for a moment; (whilst I am generalising as I don’t have the actual data on each van to confirm its CRiS registration and certainly don’t have the £000’s it would take to conduct a CRiS Check on every one of them), have you ever thought to consider that of those 6000, every one of them will have been registered with CRiS?
That’s a sobering thought, don’t you think?
6000 vehicles stolen every year and almost all of them (certainly those manufactured after 1996) will be registered with CRiS.
I suggest that to be a pretty poor theft deterrent record.
CRiS has its place and does provide some valuable services, but it doesn’t provide the security deterrent that individual owners think they’re getting, perhaps it’s more of the ‘perception of protection’.
Caravan ID takes a different approach; we work directly with you, the owner. You register your vehicle details on our secure database free of charge. At that point, your vehicle details are available to the police. You can change the status of your vehicle (e.g.: flag it as In Storage, Off Road, Sold or Touring etc) and even report it as stolen – again, and unlike CRiS, all completely free of charge.
We have been questioned as to why we make the registration and upkeep of our vehicle records free of charge. It’s simple really, if it is free there’s an extremely high probability that the database will be kept up to date (particularly as we send out regular reminders to owners to do so), meaning that there is a much higher chance of the data being accurate, which is vital if your vehicle is stolen or spotted somewhere unusual.
All well and good; Caravan ID is free to use and update and is available to the police.
But, even if the database is up to date, how do the police, fellow van owners or members of the public, curious about a vehicle (perhaps as it’s in an unusual place or being towed / driven erratically) know that the vehicle belongs to you and is where it is supposed to be? What differentiates your vehicle from the other estimated 550,000 similar vehicles out there?
The answer is simple, cost effective and deceptively efficient.
Caravan ID provide a range of decals designed to be applied to your vehicle, which immediately identifies it as yours as the decal includes your unique Caravan ID membership number (which is the last 6 digits of your vehicle VIN).
We’ve heard people state that ‘its only a sticker, what good is that?’ which is a fair question.
Apart from being a product manufactured from high-grade marine vinyl with an extremely long ‘shelf-life’, our decals are designed to be visible and are indelibly linked to our (up to date) database. All you, the police, fellow vehicle owners or curious members of the public need to do is to enter the six digit number from the easily seen decals displayed on your vehicle, into our database look-up (foc) via our app and within seconds, can instantly see the correct status of the vehicle along with (public) information about your vehicle.
As you would expect, other – private – information entered by you about your vehicle is available to the police should they need it. Perhaps they have reason to consider stopping the vehicle and need to know as much information about it prior to doing so – that’s where your decal comes in, allowing the police to enter it into our look-up facility and get exactly what they need to help them to make their decision.
Importantly, the crooks know this too and given the presence of a Caravan ID decal on your vehicle, crooks are much more likely to move on to steal a less well protected vehicle.
Can the Caravan ID decals be removed by crooks? If they have around 20 minutes, a step ladder, a hair dryer or similar, along with a power source to use it, then yes, maybe they can – but it’s really not that easy and they’ll move-on to another vehicle without our protection.
Another point to make here, is that Caravan ID decals, QR codes, DOTS and TAGS are also INSIDE your vehicle (in the case of DOTs these are secretly located), so even if the crooks take the enormous risk of removing your exterior decals, they cannot remove the interior ones without breaking into the vehicle – which will no doubt be protected by other security measures preventing such action.
So, for very little outlay, you get the protection of an up to date database and a highly visible, unique to your vehicle, identification decals which combine to provide an effective theft deterrent coupled with an easy to use, free identification system available to law enforcement and members of the public alike.
Why would crooks take the risk of stealing your Caravan ID protected vehicle when they can easily move on to steal another one of the 6000 CRiS registered vehicles stolen every year?
Why would you not invest such a small amount with Caravan ID to significantly increase the probability of your vehicle being there when you’re ready to go one holiday? Or even, still being there when you return to your pitch?
Why would you accept the ‘perception of protection’ provided via CRiS registration, when 6000+ similarly registered vehicles continue to be stolen every year?
To see just how cost effective our products are, head along to our shop and protect your leisure vehicle today.