CRiS Explained and Decoded

Friday, 28 August 2020

All new tourers are assigned a unique 17 digit CRiS Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), which is die stamped into the chassis, etched onto windows and recorded onto an electronic tag embedded within the bodywork. This VIN and the caravan description are recorded on a Touring Caravan Registration Document, which is sent to the caravan's registered keeper. 

As well as helping to recover a stolen caravan in the event of a theft, CRiS provides anyone looking to buy a used tourer with a valuable security check; CRiS can confirm the make and model details registered against a VIN, whether it is stolen or written off, or if any finance is still outstanding on it. 

  • When purchasing a new caravan, your dealer will register the van, and you will receive your CRiS certificate within a few weeks of taking ownership.
  • If you own or are buying a caravan which is pre 1992, you can now apply for the caravan to be CRiS registered if it is not already.

CRiS Numbers Decoded

You can also use the CRiS number to check some details on the caravan yourself. To help explain what the CRiS number means, take for example the number below:


SGBS000BYA1234567 SG = Manufactured in UK 
SGBS000BYA1234567 B = Make of caravan is Bailey 
SGBS000BYA1234567 S = Number of axles (S=Single, T=Twin) 
SGBS000BYA1234567 000 = Optional manufacturer's data (eg caravan model) 
SGBS000BYA1234567 BY = Manufactured by Bailey (see list below) 
SGBS000BYA1234567 A = Year of manufacture (A= 2010 - see list below) 
SGBS000BYA1234567 1234567 = Caravan serial number

Year of build codes (the caravanning build season runs from 1st September one year to 31st August the following year. So a caravan built between any time between September 1st 2010 and 31st August 2011 would show a build year code “B” for 2011.)

N = 1992
P = 1993
R = 1994
S = 1995
T = 1996
V = 1997
W = 1998
X = 1999
Y = 2000
1 = 2001
2 = 2002
3 = 2003
4 = 2004
5 = 2005
6 = 2006
7 = 2007
8 = 2008
9 = 2009
A = 2010
B = 2011
C = 2012
D = 2013
E = 2014

Manufacturer codes

AD = Adria
AV = Avondale
BE = Bessacarr 
BU = Buccaneer
BY = Bailey
CL = Carlight
CM = Coachman
CP = Compass 
CS = Cosalt 
CU = Sprite 
EL = Elddis
EX = Explorer Group
FL = Fleetwood
LU = Lunar
SW = Swift Group

Don't buy a stolen caravan

When looking at secondhand caravans, the CRiS number is your biggest ally in helping preventing you purchasing a stolen caravan, or buying a caravan with ourstanding finance owed on it.

  • Look for the CRiS number etched into the windows of the caravan
  • It will also be stamped somewhere on the chassis.
  • Ask the seller to see their CRiS document.

Once you have the number, you can telephone CRiS for an check, just like you do when buying a secondhand car. For a small fee, they will check that the caravan make and model matches the details on their register. They will also check to see if it is reported stolen, and whether there is any outstanding monies owed on the van, by the existing owner. 
Don't be tempted not to phone them and do a proper check though. It doesn't cost a lot, and could save you a fortune by preventing you from purchasing a stolen van.

Contacting CRiS

You can telephone CRiS on 0203 282 1000 to do a check on a caravan you are looking at buying, or for advice on registering your current caravan. Checks cost just £14.95 ( at time of writing ) Further details are available online from the CRiS website

Leave your comment
28/08/2020 19:18

Really interesting! I could never tell what the numbers stood for but now I do. Thanks CaravanCloud

28/03/2024 19:03
Colocarle matricula a una caravana

Hola he comprado una caravana y no de di tiene matricula solo tengo el papel de compra venta como puedo obtener un registro de esta caravana y registrarla a mi nombre?