One in five teenagers regularly visit Internet game centres without their parents' knowledge, according to a new survey. About 12 per cent of teenagers in the SAR and Taipei spent more than six hours a day in the parlours, according to the survey conducted by the Boys and Girls' Clubs Association of Hong Kong. A total of 1,171 teenagers, 568 from Hong Kong and 603 from Taipei, were interviewed in the two cities between December 30 and January 19. The interviews in Hong Kong were carried out in Shamshuipo, Mongkok and Yau Ma Tei, where the parlours have mushroomed in the past couple of years. Association supervisor Cheung Hoi-tin said a third of teenagers interviewed in the two cities had stayed in the parlours after midnight from one to three days every week. 'Nearly 20 per cent of respondents in Hong Kong said their parents were not aware of their visits to the parlours, while the proportion in Taipei is only about 9.8 per cent,' he said. Mr Cheung said parents in Hong Kong should improve communication with their children and offer them more guidance. Fifty-nine per cent of respondents in Hong Kong were aged between 13 and 15, while 86 per cent in Taipei were over 15. Online game parlours have been popular with teenagers in Taiwan since the late 1990s and the concept was imported to Hong Kong about two years ago. But Mr Cheung said many Hong Kong teenagers found the environment of the parlours unsatisfactory. 'Thirty per cent of Hong Kong respondents did not visit the parlours because of the poor air quality,' he said. 'Some are located on the upper floors of commercial buildings with tight space and narrow fire escapes,' he said. Mr Cheung urged the Government to follow Taipei's example in regulating the parlours. Taipei authorities have recently laid down requirements for the size of parlours and fire escapes, he said. 'In Taipei, teenagers under 18 are not allowed to stay in the parlours after 10pm,' Mr Cheung said.