Are there any special requirements for driving or hiring a car in Trinidad and Tobago?
In Trinidad driving is on the left. There are no left turns on a red light and u-turns are illegal. Trinidad has one of the biggest carnival celebrations in the world and you should avoid driving at this time. It takes place two days before Ash Wednesday and the whole island goes crazy.
During the rest of the year it is a good rule at the avoid rush hour anyway with the area around Queen's Park Savannah getting particularly congested. One of the biggest hazards on the roads is taxi drivers as they often do not obey rules and can stop suddenly and without warning. In particular Maxi Taxis are often involved in accidents when they stop to drop off passengers. Keep a safe distance. The biggest danger is probably pedestrians as they tend across whenever they feel like rather than waiting for lights to change. Although this jaywalking is not legal you will be the one who gets in a lot of trouble if there is an accident.
Trinidad does also suffer from relatively high crime rates. Some people believe that having a licence plate with the letter R (rental) makes them a target, and so vehicles are sometimes rented with the letter P on the licence plate. This is in fact illegal and you are more likely to get good service with the R cars. Driving after dark or in bad neighbourhoods in Trinidad is to be avoided. Some of the rural roads are lined with cow dung and this is known as ‘leepay’, but the trend is gradually getting phased out as the island becomes wealthier.