Just returned from Tobago and I have to say our experience with the taxis varied wildly! Taxis booked from the hotel were as, if not more, expensive than London. 'Proper' taxis picked up on the road, i.e. those NOT with a 'P' plate were much cheaper. We travelled from Scarborough back to our resort at the Grafton Beach in Black Rock for just 20TT$ - £2! The car was new and air-conditioned. A lot of the cars on the road just about seem to keep going and certainly wouldn't pass an M.O.T.!
We booked this same driver to take us out for the whole day to visit Charlotteville and Speyside in the north. He was lovely and took us also to Fort George and Pirates Bay for swimming, plus of course Jemma's Kitchen for lunch. He also made a point of taking different routes so that we could see some of the island, including some of the residential areas. We'd been out the night before so were quite tired and both fell asleep on the way back. As we'd missed out on that bit of sight-seeing he offered to take us out again on another day, (for free), to repeat that bit as he felt he hadn't given us full value! Unfortunately we were leaving a couple of days after that so didn't have the time. We were out from 10am to 5:45pm and only got back then because we had a dinner appointment in the evening. Otherwise we would have been back even later. All this for 500TT$. The driver's name is Shem Mapp. If you come across him I'd highly recommend him!!
We had considered hiring a car but decided in the end to take taxis etc and having seen the roads out there I'm glad we did. The quality of the roads isn't good and drivers tend to drive in the middle of the road to avoid potholes, playing 'chicken' with each other when facing an oncoming car to see who'll move over first! Also, whilst there aren't that many roads a junction can be confusing as a 'main' road will look pretty similar to a smaller road and signs are scarce.