Posted by on Jun 13, 2013 in Rent a Car in Trinidad Tobago | 0 comments

Driving in Trinidad and Tobago: Guide and Safety Tips

To get a clear of picture of Trinidad and Tobago, think of the relationship between a Sister and Brother. Like a brother and Sister, the two share a common heritage, but are Unique in their own way. As a county, Trinidad, and Tobago is a very small country with a population of slightly over a million people. The country covering only 5128 square miles is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. For such as small country, the obvious way of exploring the country is via road. Lucky, there are many Car hire companies in both the Islands of Trinidad and Tobago including international brands such as Hertz and Budget.

Driving requirements and Regulations

From the onset is it important to note that the Island country is a merry country with many festivals, and just like all festivals, people tend to loose themselves in the heat of the festivity, and as such extreme caution should be exercised especially in the Island of Trinidad. Driving is on the left hand side and overtaking on the right hand side. The country traffic rule prohibits U-turns and left turns on a red light. You need also to be wary of Taxi, most of which are driven without due respect to the local traffic rules, and as such, you need to keep a safe distance from them whenever you are driving. Local drivers prefer using the hand signals for direction, and as such you should acquaint yourself with such signs for easy interpretation.

You should not overtake in the following places: pedestrian crossing, road junction, or bend.

Minimum driving age

The threshold age for car hire in the country is twenty five years. You need also to have held the license for a minimum of two years.

Steps to take in case of an accident

According to the republic of Trinidad and Tobago drivers’ manual, you need to do the following when you are involved in a road accident: attend to injured person(s) if they are any, do not move the vehicle unless it is in a place that causes obstruction to other road users, sketch the accident scene, get the name, telephone number, and address of the other party including the witness. If you have a Camera with you, take Photos of the accident scene and finally, avoid making statement acknowledging liability.

You need also to inform the police, the car rental company and the insurance company. Contact the police through the number: 999 for ambulance and fire services use the number 990.

Safety belt requirements

Although rarely implemented, the country laws stipulate that all car occupants need to use a safety belt. Children less than twelve years should have specially fitted seats.

Fuel prices

Trinidad and Tobago is an oil producing country, and as such, petroleum is relatively cheaper compared to other Caribbean countries. However, the price keeps on fluctuating with respect to market changes. Local petrol stations operate from 8:00am to 8:00Pm.

Alcohol limit

The legal alcohol limit is 0.08%. Although this rule is rarely enforced, it is advisable to avoid alcohol if you plan on driving for obvious reasons.

Important documents

As a foreign driver, always have the following with you at all times: International driving license, vehicle lease documents, insurance documents, and a passport if you come from Vietnam, china and South Africa.

Toll roads

Due to its small size, the country has only one toll road in a controlled-access highway.

Speed Limits

Across the two Islands, the following speed limits apply. In built-up areas: 55km/hr., and in Highways: 80km/hr. Like many traffic rules, this is rarely enforced a factor that has made the Island have one of the highest accident rates in the Caribbean countries.

Parking requirements

Always park your car at designated places where security is assured. Don’t leave valuables in a vehicle. In the Capital Port of Spain, Parking is haphazard and parking space is not guaranteed. In most places, parking is free. Parking is prohibited in the following places: hospital entrances, fire stations, and bus stops.

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