I have a classroom (as opposed to online) course for which I set the date of the first exam about a week before the last date a student can withdraw without penalty, such that I can have grades returned before the withdrawal date. The date was in the syllabus, released on the first day of classes. A student has asked to take a makeup exam at a later date or to take the exam remotely. I generally allow makeup exams when there exigent reasons, and in the United States some conditions, such as military deployment, impose a legal obligation to accommodate the student. So, I asked why.
The student replied that he would be "on vacation" in connection with a later work-related trip. In other words, his job is sending him someplace nice and he wants to go early to allow some play time with the travel paid by the job.
My students, who think I am Darth Vader, would never believe it, but I am torn about this request. The university's rules tell me when I must allow a make-up exam, not when I may. I have decided that if I do allow such an exam, it will be before, not after the scheduled time. Allowing a makeup exam will, as usual I think, be modestly inconvenient for me. I believe I need to consider the appearance of fairness to the other students, and a precedent I may set that would affect other faculty.
Are there general rules or best practices about when professors should/would allow makeup exams? What should one do in the case where a student's absence is clearly voluntary, but which is a "nice" opportunity for the student?