What is an honorary consul and a career consul? How do they differ?

Honorary consuls are not professional diplomats, i.e., they do not make a living as diplomats. They usually do live and work as well as pay taxes in the country where they operate while they do represent their native country on a voluntary/not-salaried/ basis until their appointments are revoked.

They are usually asked to perform their duties by their native country; however, in some cases they might not be a citizen or origin of that country. Honorary consuls have limited authorization to act and conduct on behalf of their native country and they usually do not have diplomatic passports, do not enjoy diplomatic immunity and do not have preferential tax treatment. They have the honor to serve their respected country and they are usually selected/appointed by their merits.

Career consuls, on the other hand, are professional salaried diplomats that are posted by the government of their native countries in another foreign country for a limited time, usually three to five years. Career consuls are authorized to basically conduct all kind of diplomatic matters and services. They are holders of diplomatic passports, do enjoy diplomatic immunity and do have preferential tax treatment in their accredited countries.