The Opération Tranquillité Vacances service has swung back into action, and you can easily make use of it if you’re going on holiday over the summer.
Every year, police and gendarmeries offer a free service to watch over your house during their rounds. This helps to prevent burglary, which reportedly rises in the months of July and August when many people head off on holiday, according to the l'Observatoire de la délinquance et réponses pénales.
The service will keep watch over your property every day that you are away, including during the evening and weekends.
Arranging protection is straightforward. Download a form - available here - and take it to your nearest police commissariat or gendarmerie for your area with a form of ID and proof of address, such as a recent electricity bill.
There is a separate form for anyone living in Paris and departments in the petite couronne - available here.
In Paris, you must give at least five days’ notice ahead of your departure date, and elsewhere at least 48 hours’ notice.
The police advise homeowners to be vigilant even if they have the service in place, however, and recommend that holidaymakers should:
- Close all their windows and shutters before leaving
- Ask a neighbour to collect any post, to avoid a build-up of letters etc in the letterbox
- Make sure there are no precious jewellery, objects, or large sums of money left in the house.
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