The poll - covering Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania - showed that the share of people in the region who thought their country should join the 16-nation euro zone as soon as possible shrank to 25% in September last year from 28% in May.
The number believing their country should adopt the currency as late as possible rose to 33% from 29%, said the survey. Some 36% said euro membership should come after "a certain time".
"Compared to the previous survey wave, more respondents were hesitant about an immediate changeover," it said.
The poll could signal that many people are siding with politicians who say preserving the national currency better helps to deal with the economic crisis. Advocates say euro membership is a safe-haven for any country's economy (EurActiv 20/02/09 and 27/11/09).
Czechs were most sceptical about the single currency, with 47% of respondents believing the country should adopt the euro as late as possible and only 14% saying it should do so at the earliest possible date.
In Poland, the EU's biggest ex-communist member, the proportion was 39% versus 18% (EurActiv 26/06/09).
Estonia leads race
Among the eight, only in Hungary and Romania did more people think the euro should be adopted as soon as possible rather than as late as possible.
In the Czech Republic, 54% of people said the euro's introduction would have very or rather negative consequences for them while 37% believed they would be positive - again giving the most euro-sceptic responses among the bunch.
This part of the survey indicated Bulgarians and Romanians had the highest hopes regarding euro membership.
Analysts say Estonia may join the euro on 1 January 2011 but other countries will have to wait much longer because they fail to meet all the strict criteria on budget deficits, public debt, inflation, long-term interest rates and currency stability (EurActiv 19/01/10).
The poll also showed a general lack of certainty on when countries would adopt the euro. In Poland, 39% believed it would happen in 2011-12, 20% in 2013-14 and 24% in 2015 or later.
In crisis-hit Hungary, the highest share of people - 31% - thought their country would adopt the currency in 2015 or later. In the Czech Republic the figure was 24%.
(EurActiv with Reuters.)