A NEW coronavirus alert system announced this week has caused a lot of confusion across the country, as areas struggle to determine which level of restrictions they're under.

Here's everything you need to know about each tier.

Tier 1 - "medium" alert

Areas in Tier 1 are subject to the basic national rules previously in force.

You may not meet in a group of more than six people, indoors or outdoors, unless you're in a larger household or a support bubble.

Pubs, bars and restaurants must close at 10pm, and certain businesses must ensure they only offer table service.

Face coverings must be worn while shopping, on public transport and in other indoor areas.

Tier 2 - "high" alert

Under the Tier 2 restrictions, people cannot meet with anyone they do not live with indoors unless they are part of a support bubble.

The rule of six applies for socialising outside, including in gardens, and pubs, bars and restaurants must still close by 10pm.

All national rules, unless they have been replaced by harsher local rules, apply.

Tier 3 - "very high" alert

The highest level of restrictions means people cannot socialise with anyone outside their household in any indoor and many outdoor settings – although the rule of six will apply in public outdoor spaces such as parks or the countryside.

Pubs and bars will be forced to close unless they are operating as a restaurant, and indoor leisure facilities such as gyms, betting shops, and casinos must also close.

Weddings and funerals can go ahead with restrictions on the number of people allowed, however no wedding receptions can take place.

People are being advised not to travel into or out of Tier 3 areas, other than for work, education, youth services or because of caring responsibilities.

Anyone from a Tier 3 area should also avoid staying overnight in another part of the country, and other people should avoid staying overnight in Tier 3 areas.