Police are warning New Zealanders to remain vigilant over the holiday period.

National Manager Prevention Bruce Bird says while the level of criminal offending drops around 27 per cent on Christmas Day, crime still happens.

He says over the last five years there has been an average of 436 criminal apprehensions on December 25.

Mr Bird says while police will be allocating additional resources to popular holiday areas, the public needs to keep themselves safe too.

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He says tell your neighbours if you're heading away for Christmas, drink responsibly and don't drive under the influence.