Biggest sources of immigrants to San Francisco

Written by:
December 16, 2021
Kobby Dagan // Shutterstock

Biggest sources of immigrants to San Francisco

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 Francisco come from, using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Countries are ranked by highest number of foreign-born residents who lived in San Francisco as of 2019’s five-year estimates.

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

1 / 50
Augustin Lazaroiu // Shutterstock

#50. Romania

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,099
- 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

2 / 50
Dave Primov // Shutterstock

#49. Eritrea

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,129
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 45,119
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.1%
- #90 most common country of origin

3 / 50
Pedro Szekely // Flickr

#48. Portugal

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,136
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 171,118
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%
- #44 most common country of origin

4 / 50
HandmadePictures // Shutterstock

#47. South Africa

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,201
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

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

5 / 50
Alexandra Pugachevsky // Wikicommons

#46. Yemen

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,277
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 54,152
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.1%
- #82 most common country of origin

6 / 50
Sean Hsu // Shutterstock

#45. Singapore

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,459
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%

National
- Number of residents: 34,014
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.1%
- #101 most common country of origin

7 / 50
Wangkun Jia // Shutterstock

#44. Spain

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,632
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

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

8 / 50
Pixabay

#43. Turkey

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,633
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

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

9 / 50
Nahlik // Shutterstock

#42. Poland

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,875
- 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

10 / 50
Prin Adulyatham // Shutterstock

#41. Egypt

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 3,925
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

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

11 / 50
Vannrith Va // Unsplash

#40. Cambodia

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,140
- 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

12 / 50
OpenUpEd // Flickr

#39. Nigeria

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,377
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 350,272
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%
- #26 most common country of origin

13 / 50
GoodFreePhotos

#38. Malaysia

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,419
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

National
- Number of residents: 76,521
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.2%
- #74 most common country of origin

14 / 50
Wikimedia Commons

#37. Israel

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,484
- 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

15 / 50
Evgeniya Uvarova // Shutterstock

#36. Argentina

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,519
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

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

16 / 50
Pascal Müller // Unsplash

#35. Laos

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 4,716
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%

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

17 / 50
Simon // Pixabay

#34. Australia

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 5,068
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

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

18 / 50
Alexander Canas Arango // Shutterstock

#33. Colombia

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 5,193
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

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

19 / 50
neiljs // Flickr

#32. Ethiopia

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 5,259
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

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

20 / 50
Marek Poplawski // Shutterstock

#31. Honduras

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 5,426
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

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

21 / 50
Vixit // Shutterstock

#30. Nepal

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 5,856
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

National
- Number of residents: 140,904
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #49 most common country of origin

22 / 50
Gregory DALLEAU // Unsplash

#29. Ireland

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 5,933
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

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

23 / 50
Creativa Images // Shutterstock

#28. Indonesia

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 6,373
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.4%

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

24 / 50
Pixabay

#27. Italy

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 6,697
- 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

25 / 50
Jack Bkk // Shutterstock

#26. Thailand

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 8,227
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.6%

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

26 / 50
Unsplash

#25. Ukraine

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 9,688
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.7%

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

27 / 50
Saqib Rizvi // Shutterstock

#24. Pakistan

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 10,289
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.7%

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

28 / 50
Maksym Kozlenko // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Fiji

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 10,615
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.7%

National
- Number of residents: 47,004
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.1%
- #86 most common country of origin

29 / 50
Michal Knitl // Shutterstock

#22. Afghanistan

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 10,714
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.7%

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

30 / 50
Cheng Qian // Unsplash

#21. Burma

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 11,097
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%

National
- Number of residents: 147,573
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.3%
- #47 most common country of origin

31 / 50
Tupungato // Shutterstock

#20. France

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 11,396
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.8%

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

32 / 50
Catarina Belova // Shutterstock

#19. Brazil

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 12,784
- Percent of foreign born residents: 0.9%

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

33 / 50
Max Pixel

#18. Germany

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 14,893
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.0%

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

34 / 50
Viacheslav Lopatin // Shutterstock

#17. Russia

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 14,983
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.0%

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

35 / 50
Christian Vinces // Shutterstock

#16. Peru

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 15,028
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.0%

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

36 / 50
Unsplash

#15. Japan

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 15,872
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.1%

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

37 / 50
Ninara // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Iran

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 17,298
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.2%

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

38 / 50
Elena Simona Craciun // Shutterstock

#13. Nicaragua

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 19,072
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.3%

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

39 / 50
Unsplash

#12. Canada

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 21,513
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.5%

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

40 / 50
User:Colin // Wikimedia Commons

#11. United Kingdom

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 25,231
- Percent of foreign born residents: 1.7%

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

41 / 50
PIxabay

#10. Taiwan

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 30,324
- Percent of foreign born residents: 2.1%

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

42 / 50
Kys951 // Wikimedia Commons

#9. South Korea

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 30,368
- Percent of foreign born residents: 2.1%

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

43 / 50
Kobby Dagan // Shutterstock

#8. Guatemala

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 33,589
- Percent of foreign born residents: 2.3%

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

44 / 50
Diego Delso // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Hong Kong

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 45,149
- Percent of foreign born residents: 3.1%

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

45 / 50
JMRAFFi // Wikimedia Commons

#6. El Salvador

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 56,375
- Percent of foreign born residents: 3.9%

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

46 / 50
Quangpraha // Pixabay

#5. Vietnam

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 60,583
- Percent of foreign born residents: 4.2%

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

47 / 50
Kriangkrai Thitimakorn // Shutterstock

#4. India

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 135,591
- Percent of foreign born residents: 9.4%

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

48 / 50
Joseph Oropel // Shutterstock

#3. Philippines

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 160,908
- Percent of foreign born residents: 11.1%

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

49 / 50
Sean Pavone // Shutterstock

#2. China

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 224,854
- Percent of foreign born residents: 15.6%

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

50 / 50
Jakub Hejtmánek // Wikicommons

#1. Mexico

San Francisco-Oakland-Berkeley, CA Metro Area
- Number of residents: 230,302
- Percent of foreign born residents: 16.0%

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

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