About the Consulate
The Consulate Today
The U.S. Consulate General in Guadalajara is responsible for consular services in the states of Jalisco, Aguascalientes, Colima, and Nayarit. The Consulate's Public Affairs Section and Foreign Commercial Service also conduct programs and other activities in Guanajuato, Michoacán, and Sinaloa. The Consulate staff consists of 80 local employees and 35 U.S. officers representing the Departments of State, Commerce, Agriculture, and Homeland Security, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Agency, and the Social Security Administration.
The Visa Section is perhaps the best known of the Consulate’s services. It receives over 1,200 applicants each day seeking non-immigrant visas (tourist, business, student, temporary worker). Recent innovations in the application process include the addition of digital photos and fingerprints. These changes, along with the need to interview a high volume of applicants, require constant training for the staff in the use of new technology and the detection of fraudulent documents.
Western Mexico is home to the largest resident population of U.S. citizens outside the United States. Its beaches and other destinations attract tens of thousands of U.S. tourists each year, increasing the demand for consular services. Currently, the American Citizen Services Section, along with the Consular Agency in Vallarta, is responsible for about 50,000 U.S. citizens resident in the district and about 100,000 U.S. citizen tourists, students, and business persons in this region on any given day. The services range from issuing passports and reports of birth, notarizing documents, providing assistance in the event of the death of a U.S. citizen, and visiting U.S. prisoners to ensure that they are treated in accordance with local laws. The Federal Benefits Unit of the Consulate is in charge of administering U.S. benefits to U.S. and Mexican citizens.
The Consulate’s Public Affairs Section distributes information about the United States and sponsors educational and cultural programs to build mutual understanding between American and Mexican citizens. It manages exchange programs and supports the teaching and study of English. Through its activities, the Section reaches out to local and regional audiences on diverse topics such as citizen safety, energy and climate change, migration, human rights, economic opportunity, and the rule of law.
The district of the Consulate General in Guadalajara is developing in importance as an industrial and commercial center in western Mexico. The direct and indirect investments from the U.S. continue to grow. The Foreign Commercial Service office works closely with U.S. and Mexican businesses to facilitate trade and to address issues that hinder or impede economic growth.
Through its services, the U.S. Consulate General in Guadalajara demonstrates to the leaders and people of Mexico the value of a mature, responsible partnership with the United States.