Public attitudes about drinking water quality, fresh water availability, water spending, and suitable uses for recycled water were determined with a survey administered to respondents in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), North America, and Europe. Statistically significant differences in perception were identified as a function of respondent’s country of residence. Among the findings are a significantly greater proportion of residents of the GCC who view their tap water quality as poor (36.6%) compared to those in North America and Europe (23.8%), and a significantly greater percentage of the GCC group prefers to utilise bottled water for drinking (88.4% vs. 66.3%) and says that they ‘never’ drink tap water (76.1% vs. 26.2%). Differences in perception of drinking water quality and source preference are likely attributable to the prevalence of desalination as a drinking water source in the GCC, and public uncertainty regarding the potability of desalinated water.
Keywords: water, tap, bottled, Gulf Cooperation Council, GCC, desalination, perception, drinking water quality