Don’t waste your valuable time this Easter. Be prepared for those seasonal closedowns that can wreck the plans of unknowing foreign residents.
Semana Santa (March 29-April 5) is Mexico’s prime vacation time and very little official work gets done. In fact, virtually nowhere will be open from Maunday Thursday (April 2) through Easter Sunday (April 5).
This includes all federal, state and municipal offices; banks; post offices and diplomatic missions (including the U.S. and Canadian consulates in Guadalajara).
The offices of the National Immigration Institute (INM) located in the Federal Palace in Guadalajara will be operating with a skeleton staff on the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of Semana Santa, so only urgent business there is advised.
Students have a real cause for celebration over the Easter holidays. Classes are suspended for a full two weeks in most educational establishments, both public and private. They resume on Monday, April 13.
The Guadalajara Reporter will also be on vacation during Semana Santa, although the edition of April 4 will be available on time and in all the usual outlets. The paper’s offices in Guadalajara and Ajijic will reopen on Monday, April 6.
Shopping during Semana Santa will be less affected, since supermarkets and stores in the major malls will keep their doors open with regular hours. In the Guadalajara city center, and in many smaller towns, some stores and eateries may decide to close over the Thursday to Sunday period. In these hard economic times, it is likely only a few business owners will take the opportunity to enjoy a two-week break.