Taxi flagfall is 7.5 RMB, meter rate is 1.5 RMB/km. Not a bad way to get around town if you're in a hurry. Taxi from train station to the restaurant mentioned in restaurant tips section cost about 10 RMB.
Bus Tai'an -- Jinan could arrive at any of the 6 (?) long-distance bus stations in Jinan so make sure you know which one you're going to. There seems to be more than 1 long-distance bus station in Tai'an, a little confusing. Ours cost 17 RMB, arrived in 1.5 hours at the long-distance bus station opposite Jinan train station, very convenient. There's a KFC right beside this Jinan bus station with clean squat toilets in the basement, very convenient.
There's a KFC next to the long-distance bus station (opposite Jinan train station), clean squat toilets in the basement.
Chinese-language Jinan map available at a newspaper stand near Jinan train station for an asking price of 5 RMB, bargainable to 4.5 RMB.
I rented a taxi from outside the station for half a day (actually 1pm until 6.30pm) for RMB200. He took me to all the sites and was a good source of information.
All conversation was in Chinese though.
Getting to Jinan is easy from Beijing, Shanghai and Xi'an.
Getting away is not so straightforward, as Jinan is, bizarrely, classified as an intermediate station. This means that you can only buy setas and sleepers for trains that start in Jinan So, if you want to go to Beijing you can only guarantee a seat or sleeper on the T36 day train or 2158 overnight sleeper. You can get a ticket to get you onto any of the other 12 trains that travel that route, but it is a standing ticket, and you will need to negotiate with the conductor once you get on and that is IF there are places available (and there may not be).
Also, don't expect all hotels to help you get a ticket. I spent all morning getting a ticket because of this. I have put more tips at the top level 'China' page. Plan ahead!!
There is no separate soft-class waiting room at Jinan.