Community Flea Markets and Manner of Consumption in Urban Context


  • Tanapoom Ativetin Department of Business Administration, Faculty of Social Science, Srinakharinwirot University


Culture, Commodity, Consumption, Flea Market


This research aimed to study the evolution, existence and survival of community flea markets in the context of modern urban consumption of which traditional retailing businesses have gradually been replaced by emerging modern trade enterprises including convenience stores, supermarkets, hypermarkets and department stores with more standardized commodities and efficient tools to respond to the consumer needs. Indeed, the research also emphasized the role of flea markets regarding consumers – both in terms of physical and psychological needs based on the intimate relationship between buyers and sellers. Moreover, it also explores the unique characteristics of flea markets that affect its existence and survival in modern society.

A comparative study of two community flea markets.i.e., a morning flea market in a middle–class residential area and an evening flea market for the working class located next to a main street, based on observation and indepth interviews, revealed that the markets represented very important roles in generating three dimensions of consumption experiences among consumers including: 1) consumption of goods and services, 2) consumption of experiences and 3) consumption of social and cultural interactions. These consumption experiences emerged from the involved individuals within the flea markets – the buyers with other buyers, the seller and other sellers and the buyers and the sellers as well.

The present existence of flea markets in the modern urban context has resulted from a process by which the markets have been transformed into consumption venues provided with goods and services that cannot be found in modern trade enterprises. The close relationships between buyers and the sellers enable and assure consumer loyalty that eventually demonstrate considerable influence on the markets’ adaptation in responding to rapid-changing and never-ending needs of the consumers.





How to Cite

Ativetin, T. (2012). Community Flea Markets and Manner of Consumption in Urban Context. Fine Arts Journal: Srinakharinwirot University, 15(1), 91–101. Retrieved from