QINGDAO: A majority of people across the world know Beijing will host of the 2008 Olympic Games but not all of them have the Chinese mainland on their Asia tour itinerary in next two years.
These are results of a survey conducted by Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) and Visa International, covering more than 5,000 people in the 10 key source markets for Asia Pacific.
The study carried out at the beginning of this year found that 52 percent of the respondents were "actively considering" visiting Asia in the next two years, and 57 percent of them considered Thailand to be their most popular destination.
Hong Kong is the second most popular choice at 48 percent, followed closely by the Chinese mainland and Japan, joint third with 47 percent.
The most well-informed markets, however, are Japan (93 percent), the Chinese mainland (Beijing), and Republic of Korea (82 percent).
The best informed market outside Asia is Australia (80 percent). And the least informed markets are Germany, with only 51 percent, and the United States, 52 percent.
Interestingly, potential travelers in the well-informed markets don't necessarily have the strongest wish to visit Beijing to watch the Olympics.
The survey said people in ROK, India and the US were the most likely to visit Beijing.
Japanese and Australians, who have a high recognition percentage of Beijing, are the most unlikely to visit it, as do people in the United Kingdom, Sweden and Germany.
The most commonly cited reasons by those who are unlikely to visit Beijing during the Olympics are "too expensive" (38 percent) and "no interest in the Olympics" (36 percent).
Source: China Daily