Lens caps are silly. Move on from that idea. More photographs have been lost from the task of removing camera and lens cap than in changing a filter.
There is no contact with any element at all with any of the filters I use; that is made quite certain through years of experience. But I've been present to see other people in their enthusiasm quickly screw on a filter and watch it made rasping contact with the front element. Not funny. Filters crack when hit; they very rarely shatter. A side impact will damage the filter's ring, deflecting that damage from the lens flange (a much more serious type of damage).
Some people might view it as false economy and risky. So too is using your camera at the beach. "No risk", they say. Period. You bet there is!