In my previous homes, I would often buy plastic to put over the windows.
It's kind of a hassle the day you do it. But if you have extremely drafty windows, it's hard to heat the house with that much of an air leak. The harder it is to heat, the more you are going to spend to heat the house.
I've done both kinds - the temporary and disposable kinds. And the re-usable strips kind. I did find that some of the re-usable strips didn't work out quite as well in subsequent years, but for the most part, weren't that much more expensive so as a result they did tend to save you a little money as opposed to buying disposable every year.
But what mattered more? Was that the thickness of the plastic counted more than if it was reusable or not. Also what counts? How it's mounted. If it's mounted entirely within the window frame and not including the edges of the windows? Then there's a good chance that most of the draft will still get through. I've never had much luck with the plastic that shrinks with use of a hair dryer in making it more efficient. The plastic tended to be thinner and more prone to tearing... and I found that the thicker plastic kept rooms a lot warmer.
I haven't done it in the apartment (yet) for many reasons.
1. My energy costs are low to start with
2. It's kind of a time sink (for at least a few hours every fall)
3. You can't use the sliding glass doors while it's on - but my sliding glass doors are barely useful in the best of times due to age and disintegration of the moving parts.
4. There's a deep well around the windows. I only have three options - cover the window panes (won't help much); try to cover the window wells entirely (means the cat can't sit in the windows); or try to attach the plastic within the wells within a half inch of the frame (probably won't work quite right)
Will I do this?
I'm thinking I will try putting up plastic this weekend. I figure that it will cost approximately $20 for the insulation kits, take about two hours to pick up supplies and install it, and save me approximately $20 per window - x 3 windows. Reasonable savings for a small investment of time. Since I know these windows are particularly drafty, it's definitely going to help. Especially when I think about those nights when the wind blows just-so and the furnace runs almost non-stop and can't get the temperature up to the setting.