Japan has announced that it will allow visa-free entry to independent tourists, removing the daily cap on arrivals from October 11 onwards [per Skift]. Inbound arrivals would need to be vaccinated and boosted to avoid needing a pre-arrival negative result from a Covid-19 test, according to [per Kyodo News].
The Yen is currently at its weakest level in 24 years, trading below 141 yen per dollar [via ft.com]. In some cases, goods and services in Japan may be about 40% cheaper if you’re converting USD to Yen.
Booking flights with miles/points is worthwhile when the cost of airfare is high. In this case, the cash cost of flights between Houston and Tokyo is still relatively high, about $1100-$1500, with stops.
United has round-trip flights from Houston (IAH) to Tokyo (NRT/HND) for 70,000 miles/points, NONSTOP. 35,000 miles/points each way. Regular economy, not basic. Fare allows for carry-on bag and seat selection
Click for more details and booking links United MileagePlus Nonstop: Houston to/from Tokyo [70,000 points +$48 tax] round-trip (Including Hanami Season)