access. TIGO has good coverage for voice & data all over the area (and most of Guatemala), but performance varies on the Rio depending upon exact location. For example, my place is on high land near the village of Cayo Quemado and I get decent service
there, but just a short distance away in the bays near Burnt Key Marina (AKA Texan Bay) it stinks. Gap in the antenna
coverage there. Tall antenna
and booster helps. Best performance is in the Fronteras area (population center). But, this is still cell based service
so not blistering fast in the best case, but adequate for typical cruiser use.
Re travel. This is one negative to the Rio. Unless you have access to a private or chartered plane and permission to use the private air strip on the Rio, travel to the Rio is inconvenient. Most get to/from the Rio via Guatemala
City because the City has the most options for international flights, but its about a 5 hour bus ride to the Rio (versus a 45' flight in a private plane!). Alternative 1, you can fly into San Pedro Sula, Honduras
which is a bit closer, but has more limited flight options. Alternative 2, Belize
City then land and water
travel to the Rio, but airfare tends to be higher. Alternative 3, Flores Guatemala
and then bus to Fronteras, but very limited flight schedules.
Good news is that most folks only make this trek once or twice a year so in the big scheme of things its not so bad. Break it up by visiting some of the sights along the way over a few days. We usually spend a few days in Guatemala City as a treat and/or to run errands before continuing onward.