Sharks: they are scaring tourists away from Australia | Photo: VirtualWolf/Creative Commons

A survey concluded that 14 percent of tourists interested in going for a holiday to Australia might not go ahead with their plans due to shark attacks.

The study led by Hiresquare involved 512 people from the five most important countries for Australian tourism: China, UK, USA, New Zealand and Japan.

The groups that are most sensitive to shark attacks are Chinese and American tourists, surfers, and families with children under 18 years of age.

The research notes that 6.1 percent of the respondents will not travel to Australia anymore due to shark attacks, and an additional 7.8 percent say that shark attacks significantly influence their decision on whether to come to Australia or not.

The overall potential impact on Australian tourism industry is of 2.9 billion dollars, especially when tourists stress that they plan to either surf, swim, or dive during their stay in the country.

Additionally, 42 percent of all respondents confirm they heard the news about recent shark attacks in Australia. Surfers are also more scared about the predator's moves than swimmers and divers - "only" 49 percent say sharks have no impact on their traveling decisions.

In Australia, the risk of a shark attack for surfers is 84 percent higher than the next five water activities combined (spearfishing, bodyboarding, snorkeling, swimming, and diving).

Learn more about sharks, discover the most shark-infested waters in the world, know how to survive a shark attack, and take a look at the most efficient shark deterrents in the market.