Biggest sources of immigrants to San Diego

Written by:
April 21, 2022
User:Colin // Wikimedia Commons

Biggest sources of immigrants to San Diego

Nearly 14% of the United States population is composed of immigrants. But in reality, the vast majority of Americans today are here because of relatives who immigrated from other countries some time in the last several hundred years.

And while the distinctive American culture and spirit is the result of blending many diverse cultures and histories, the United States has for centuries had an up-and-down relationship with immigration.

Each era of immigration has been met with reductive ideas and resistance, whether the backlash was directed toward the Chinese, Irish, Italians, or Mexicans. Immigration laws have targeted specific groups at various times, stoking intolerance and preventing people from truly joining American society. Over time, however, as laws changed to be more equitable and immigrants found their footings, we have reaped the rewards of innovation in business, music, art, literature, dance, food, societal norms, entertainment, and sports—all while realizing a greater understanding of and respect for different cultures, religions, and ideas.

Stacker compiled a list of the countries most immigrants to San Diego come from, using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Countries are ranked by highest number of foreign-born residents who lived in San Diego as of 2019’s five-year estimates.

Keep reading to find out more about the immigrant community in your home city.

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byvalet // Shutterstock

#50. Jamaica

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,152
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.1%

National
- Number of residents: 741,386
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.7%
- #13 most common country of origin

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Augustin Lazaroiu // Shutterstock

#49. Romania

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,208
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 162,046
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%
- #45 most common country of origin

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Elena Simona Craciun // Shutterstock

#48. Nicaragua

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,320
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 251,913
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.6%
- #33 most common country of origin

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Wangkun Jia // Shutterstock

#47. Spain

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,441
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 115,113
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #55 most common country of origin

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trezordia // Shutterstock

#46. Sweden

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,455
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 47,286
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.1%
- #85 most common country of origin

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Saqib Rizvi // Shutterstock

#45. Pakistan

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,543
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 376,127
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.9%
- #25 most common country of origin

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Gregory DALLEAU // Unsplash

#44. Ireland

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,659
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 121,469
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #53 most common country of origin

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Pixabay

#43. Netherlands

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,714
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 85,161
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #69 most common country of origin

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Pixabay

#42. Turkey

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,778
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 119,380
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #54 most common country of origin

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Creativa Images // Shutterstock

#41. Indonesia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,846
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 96,229
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #62 most common country of origin

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Evgeniya Uvarova // Shutterstock

#40. Argentina

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,849
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 194,435
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%
- #39 most common country of origin

12 / 50
Prin Adulyatham // Shutterstock

#39. Egypt

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,897
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 191,452
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%
- #40 most common country of origin

13 / 50
Simon // Pixabay

#38. Australia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 1,911
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 92,483
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #64 most common country of origin

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Fitria Ramli // Shutterstock

#37. Saudi Arabia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,047
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 85,000
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #70 most common country of origin

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Bernard Gagnon // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Syria

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,052
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 95,802
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #63 most common country of origin

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Unsplash

#35. Lebanon

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,111
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 121,697
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #52 most common country of origin

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Falkenpost // Pixabay

#34. Cuba

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,151
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 1,289,875
- Percent of foreign born residents: 2.9%
- #7 most common country of origin

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Marek Poplawski // Shutterstock

#33. Honduras

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,199
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 651,123
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.5%
- #16 most common country of origin

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Wikimedia Commons

#32. Israel

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,229
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 135,672
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #50 most common country of origin

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neiljs // Flickr

#31. Ethiopia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,465
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 249,777
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.6%
- #34 most common country of origin

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MDOGAN // Shutterstock

#30. Somalia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,527
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 98,966
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #60 most common country of origin

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Nahlik // Shutterstock

#29. Poland

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,543
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 410,841
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.9%
- #21 most common country of origin

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Vannrith Va // Unsplash

#28. Cambodia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,696
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 151,066
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #46 most common country of origin

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HandmadePictures // Shutterstock

#27. South Africa

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,715
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 104,022
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #56 most common country of origin

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Diego Delso // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Hong Kong

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 2,812
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 231,275
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.5%
- #36 most common country of origin

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Jack Bkk // Shutterstock

#25. Thailand

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,082
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 255,345
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.6%
- #32 most common country of origin

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Tupungato // Shutterstock

#24. France

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,247
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 181,554
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%
- #41 most common country of origin

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Unsplash

#23. Ukraine

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,282
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 345,250
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%
- #28 most common country of origin

29 / 50
Michal Knitl // Shutterstock

#22. Afghanistan

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,289
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 101,548
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #59 most common country of origin

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Christian Vinces // Shutterstock

#21. Peru

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,387
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 451,076
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.0%
- #18 most common country of origin

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Pixabay

#20. Italy

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,907
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.5%

National
- Number of residents: 332,857
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%
- #30 most common country of origin

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Alexander Canas Arango // Shutterstock

#19. Colombia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,929
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.5%

National
- Number of residents: 761,374
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.7%
- #12 most common country of origin

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JMRAFFi // Wikimedia Commons

#18. El Salvador

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,563
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.6%

National
- Number of residents: 1,381,008
- Percent of foreign born residents: 3.1%
- #5 most common country of origin

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Pascal Müller // Unsplash

#17. Laos

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,829
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.6%

National
- Number of residents: 181,546
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%
- #42 most common country of origin

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Catarina Belova // Shutterstock

#16. Brazil

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 6,112
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%

National
- Number of residents: 433,479
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.0%
- #20 most common country of origin

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Viacheslav Lopatin // Shutterstock

#15. Russia

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 6,272
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%

National
- Number of residents: 391,641
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.9%
- #22 most common country of origin

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Max Pixel

#14. Germany

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 6,841
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.9%

National
- Number of residents: 560,368
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.3%
- #17 most common country of origin

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PIxabay

#13. Taiwan

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 7,674
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.0%

National
- Number of residents: 381,098
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.9%
- #24 most common country of origin

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Kobby Dagan // Shutterstock

#12. Guatemala

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 8,014
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.0%

National
- Number of residents: 979,098
- Percent of foreign born residents: 2.2%
- #10 most common country of origin

40 / 50
Ninara // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Iran

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 11,344
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.5%

National
- Number of residents: 382,260
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.9%
- #23 most common country of origin

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Unsplash

#10. Japan

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 11,647
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.5%

National
- Number of residents: 345,140
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%
- #29 most common country of origin

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Unsplash

#9. Canada

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 12,072
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.6%

National
- Number of residents: 808,566
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.8%
- #11 most common country of origin

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User:Colin // Wikimedia Commons

#8. United Kingdom

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 12,310
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.6%

National
- Number of residents: 698,612
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.6%
- #14 most common country of origin

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Kys951 // Wikimedia Commons

#7. South Korea

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 14,851
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.9%

National
- Number of residents: 1,044,634
- Percent of foreign born residents: 2.4%
- #9 most common country of origin

45 / 50
USACE HQ , JIM GORDAN, CIV, USACE // Wikicommons

#6. Iraq

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 23,240
- Percent of foreign born residents: 3.0%

National
- Number of residents: 225,038
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.5%
- #38 most common country of origin

46 / 50
Kriangkrai Thitimakorn // Shutterstock

#5. India

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 25,243
- Percent of foreign born residents: 3.3%

National
- Number of residents: 2,561,906
- Percent of foreign born residents: 5.8%
- #2 most common country of origin

47 / 50
Sean Pavone // Shutterstock

#4. China

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 28,568
- Percent of foreign born residents: 3.7%

National
- Number of residents: 2,162,395
- Percent of foreign born residents: 4.9%
- #3 most common country of origin

48 / 50
Quangpraha // Pixabay

#3. Vietnam

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 38,516
- Percent of foreign born residents: 5.0%

National
- Number of residents: 1,336,988
- Percent of foreign born residents: 3.0%
- #6 most common country of origin

49 / 50
Joseph Oropel // Shutterstock

#2. Philippines

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 98,068
- Percent of foreign born residents: 12.7%

National
- Number of residents: 1,983,939
- Percent of foreign born residents: 4.5%
- #4 most common country of origin

50 / 50
Jakub Hejtmánek // Wikicommons

#1. Mexico

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 336,009
- Percent of foreign born residents: 43.4%

National
- Number of residents: 11,250,541
- Percent of foreign born residents: 25.6%
- #1 most common country of origin

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